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paperweight posted 4/13/2015 09:40 AM

rachelc - I have brought up the idea of Retrouville, and it's the same as with everything else. He agrees but then nothing is done. If anything ever gets done, it has to be me who does it. I have to do the research, I have to book it, I have to pay for it, etc. I'm tired of being put in the role of "mommy" which he rails against since he is extremely passive/aggressive and then turns it around and calls me "controlling." I have compromised on all the things which make him feel "controlled" i.e. transparency, checking in more often when he is traveling, looking at his phone/laptop, etc., yet he still accuses me of being controlling. I told him that he is actually the one who is controlling, through his P/A. He doesn't get it.

And I know I have a right to have conditions to be met, but anything I ask for or want he throws back at me. He gets angry whenever I try and talk about what I need to heal because I had an affair first. He is resentful of being "monitored" because I am the one who cheated first. It doesn't matter what he did afterwards because in his words, what I did will always be worse than anything he ever does, because I broke him. I know intellectually that is bs, blameshifting and a total cop out, but part of me wonders if there is any truth in that. I just don't know how to navigate both our infidelities when we have such differing views on what is needed to rebuild. I don't see him doing any "real" work and he thinks I am obsessing. I just feel like we are killing any love that is left between us. We can't get out of our own way.

rachelc posted 4/13/2015 09:47 AM

paperweight - I'm so sorry to hear this. If you have to sign up and do all the legwork for Retrouvaille then do it. And after you go maybe you'll know for sure if the marriage is salvageable...
My guess - he's so ashamed of what he did he is justifying it by blaming you. My husband has done the same thing - said what I did broke him, changed his personality so he kind of took himself off the hook, so to speak. Thing is, it's not true and deep down, they know it. So that's why they can't look at it.
You can prod along in this marriage but you can only control yourself. Especially in MH situations, it takes both spouses working overtime to heal...

paperweight posted 4/13/2015 10:19 AM

rachelc - I go back and forth on whether to just go ahead and book the Retrouville. My hope is that it would be helpful, but then I wonder if it would be a huge waste because he will feel he is being "made" to do it and not get anything out of it because he will just be resentful the whole time. Admittedly, I am also resentful of feeling like I am only one who does anything to try and save our marriage and therefore haven't booked it. A vicious cycle, I know.

I have asked WH about whether he feels shame and that is why he cannot talk about it or face it. He says no. I think it is a definite possibility, especially given his FOO issues, but only he can come to that realization. Problem is, he isn't very interested in introspection and looking/working on his stuff. He has said this may times. I know I can be too intense about this stuff, but my thought is, deal with it and work through it. It may suck and hurt and be embarrassing and awful to face some truths about ourselves and our issues, but then it gets better, right? It won't ever get better if we slap a smiley face on the situation and pretend to be superficially happy. Ugh, I'm tired. Tired of thinking about this all the time, tired and getting numb. Thanks for responding.

Sadlady14 posted 4/21/2015 01:41 AM

Ok. So being a MH really sucks. Long story short. I cheated first, PA AND EA, lasted about 2 mo. Mostly EA as saw my AP in RLF twice. I told H and ended it. NC since. Did everything he asked. About a month after D day he had extended ONS-texted w his AP for a week then ONS over two occasions. He told me three weeks later. I strongly suspected as I caught him online IMing her. He ended it 2 days after their last contact. The three weeks after he was with her but I did not know he was with her were pretty good. He told me and of course I was pissed. I never came close to saying stuff like he said to me though. Some of those things will never leave my head that he said when I confessed even though he has apologized for a lot of them.
Anyway, so he was depressed for quite awhile before my A. He is still depressed now. We are both in IC and MC. Overall things have gradually improved. Today was a bad day for both of us. When I am upset I need to talk and when he is upset he needs to withdraw. How do others manage this? Hard to find someone to talk to after a certain hour too.
Also, I fear his depression will prevent us from continuing to R. He says I am great in MC and other times as far as my behavior towards him but also says sometimes that it doesn't help him feel better. I try to then think that at least I am not making it worse.
Why do I take everything so personally?
Ugh. Thanks, MHs for letting me vent and any help is appreciated.

Stillkicking posted 4/24/2015 03:07 AM

Can their A be a deal breaker or do we have to munch the sandwich together???

rachelc posted 4/24/2015 09:14 AM

any affair can be a dealbreaker. The thought that one did it so the other must "take it" is not healthy.

Sadlady14 posted 5/4/2015 16:22 PM

Yes, I think any affair can be a deal breaker also. However, I don't think an affair is always a reason for divorce.

I have struggled with this also for several reasons. I had my affair first. It was EA and PA X 2 mo. His was electronic communication for a week then ONS a month after my confession. He confessed 3 wks after his.

When I C, I was really messed up, confessed very spontaneously and said I wanted open M- my selfish way of keeping both. Said we could find him someone else-ugh-still can't believe I ever said that. I do not want open M. I took all that back quickly but he was talking about revenge affair to me for awhile. His rage got really bad, told me he hoped I burned in hell at one point, that was so difficult to hear. I hit my low point around the time of his A. I caught him IMing her. He denied it when I asked if he was in contact with anyone, he pretended to break it off, but didn't and then was with her

Ok, so some of the hard questions I have for him ( yes, I have done the first for myself).
What made your A an acceptable alternative to not doing it?

He has told me that after dealing with my C for three weeks, he had determined that he would either have to leave ( not sure if he meant permanently, but I think yes as he is fairly all or nothing) or have a brief A to be able to be with me and move forward. Prior to this, he had only been with me and I had been with one other person prior to husband then my AP. He has said he is sorry he hurt me, he has said it was stupid and he shouldn't have done it and that he didn't like it. He seems to be telling the truth with those statements.

However, how could you do to me (something similar-affair was not EA, seems lesser to me, but the lying to my face about it is HUGE for me) what you said was the most painful thing you have ever been through to me?

I didn't get much of an answer yet to that one. Hoping to readdress in MC. I first posed it in MC, he really seemed to have pause with that but no answer. He said the whole thing was not revenge. Was about him, getting masculinity back and he would have not been able to stay with me otherwise. BTW, he was much calmer after it happened, a lot of the anger was gone and he has really been engaged and present for the most part.

We are both in IC AND MC. He does seem to be "doing the work".

Any thoughts on this? Would especially like insight/feedback from guys or any madhatters who had the 2nd/later affair.

Me-FWS then FBS, D DAY 1/15
him-FBS then FWS, D day 3/15
Seem to be in R


notyours posted 5/10/2015 19:13 PM

How did I become a MH, in the past week I've done everything I was so upset at my WH about. We are supposed to be R, but I don't know what I want anymore, it's scary. What do I do, I'm at such a cross roads with my relationship with him and myself and it's such a hard time, he is really trying,but I don't feel like it is enough. We just lost a close friend 2 weeks ago and I don't know why that would be a trigger, but I've done the things I said I wouldn't and I don't really know why.

exhaustedheader posted 5/29/2015 01:15 AM

Just chekin in . dont know why, things have actually been smooth. No one probably remembers me anyway..ha. Xww is still dealing with fallout from trying to smuggle crap into a local county lockup from what, a year and a half ago?? I dont see her.
Kids have seemed to move on ,,slowly. Benn dating a spanish beauty for a long while now, shes worlds better for me, marriage has been thrown into the mix recently, we will see...love to all...keep trying

exhaustedheader posted 5/29/2015 01:30 AM

Awfully quiet in here...faint echo said twice...

Undefinabl3 posted 5/29/2015 10:50 AM

Ok helpful MH'ers.....I need some non-affair but trust issue help.

I did wrong. I am a member of an online yard sale. I found a steam mop that was just like the one of my mom's that I broke and told him I wanted it.

We set up a price and a place to pick up (a fire station for safety), and boom it was done. The problem is that I never told DH.

My own issues were the reason why I didn't tell him, the same I have been trying, and usually succeeding in, but failing at times. DH treats me like a child - and I am a grown ass woman. I just wanted to take care of this business without being scolded or whatever. That is not his issue it's mine, and I still should have told him.

So, of course his is stuck on 'you meet a strange man without telling me' - and since this conversation was taking place at 1:30am, I knew that if I were tell him right then that it was really his wife and her daughters, we met on the way to whatever practice that they were going to - it wouldn't have made a hells bit of difference to him, rightfully so.

It's a breech in trust. I am fighting myself to not become defensive in this situation, and now I a not sure how to apologize effectively and to help get some footing back together.

After being in BS land for so long, I have kind of forgotten what it's like to be in WS land. I am a bit lost.

[This message edited by Undefinabl3 at 10:52 AM, May 29th (Friday)]

hurtininHouston posted 6/19/2015 09:01 AM

[This message edited by hurtininHouston at 7:23 AM, October 17th (Monday)]

LosferWords posted 6/19/2015 10:37 AM

What happened, hurtininHouston?

LosferWords posted 6/19/2015 11:05 AM

By the way, hi, EH! You know I remember you! I'm glad things are going better for you.

Undefinabl3 - If my wife were to do something like that without telling me, the first reason I would be upset is out of fear for her safety. Please be careful and keep your husband in the loop. There are some horrible people out there.

sounclear posted 6/19/2015 12:12 PM

So, I am not really sure where to start. So, I will go back to MY timeline based on my own perception of what occurred in my marriage.
We got together when she was 19 and I was 21 (now 36 & 38 respectively). We had our first child in 2004....wonderful! We loved, or seemed to love, each other more than life itself. Things seemed perfect (white picket fence and all)...
After a couple years, we got pregnant again (yes, WE.lol). Throughout the first pregnancy, she became emotional and hormonal, as expected. I fought and battled back and forth until reading and learning about potential birth defects and trauma that may occur when the mother experiences stress. So, with the second pregnancy, I shut my mouth. I became a resentful 'yes'-man. I made a stupid decision to start having an affair with a woman I met. Over the next five years or so, I had numerous affairs with several different women. I never told my wife and, as far as I could tell (and she later confirmed), she had no idea or inkling that I could even do that to her and our family. After the birth of our second, beautiful, daughter, I stopped biting my tongue and battled back, every chance I got. Things were rocky at best for the following five years...when, unexpectedly conceived a third child. Our son was born in 2011. Once I learned she was pregnant, I severed ties with any extramarital affairs and re-dedicated myself to my family..too little too late I am sure. Looking back, I was not giving 100% to my marriage, family, job, or self at any point in my life. Things were still rocky. We fought constantly. to the point of our soon-to-be 11 year old daughter and 8 year old can't even remember "mom and dad kissing even once...maybe one time." I cried when I heard this. It hurt. Everything was (silently) fine, with no communication and much resentment on both sides. My wife had become overly verbally abusive (i.e., calling me a bitch and loser and any other name that she could come up with to degrade and emasculate me). I, in turn, became verbally abusive as well. Looking back, I have never been very good at expressing my feelings. I became extremely emotionally numb/cold and insensitive to her needs and emotions. She never said anything, but it was clear that she was miserable. So, one day, with the whole family in the car, my wife went into a store. Without hesitation, I picked up her cell phone and looked out of distrust(which I had never done in the 17 years we have been together). to my horror, I saw a text to someone titled, 'Im worth it.' My heart broke instantly. When she came out, she said, "I knew you'd look at my phone." She admitted to having a 3 month affair with a coworker (an older African american gentleman), having sex "under ten times." I read a text describing how soft his bed was, etc...
I was as mad and rage-filled as one could be for 2 days following. My kids are surely traumatized for life, as they know way too many details for kids to grasp. After 2 days of fury and rage, I did some soul searching and came to the point of suffering due to my own past indiscretions. I talked of karma and how she really got me back, etc. I made it a point to forgive myself, but could not do so without forgiving her. I didn't want to be mad at myself, but couldn't be mad at her without placing some blame on myself. I don't really know what to say. I filed for divorce the following day, after finding out. I have confessed my sins to her, my priest, and family. My wife wants to reconcile. She says that since we both messed up, I shouldn't be so mad at her. I explained the selfish nature of infidelity, how her acts hurt me worse an mine hurt her. She confuses forgiveness with reconciliation, which I am not even close to thinking about at this point. I plan to follow through with divorce and, at this point, do not see her as a good person or someone I would spend time with as a friend or otherwise. I can't find her physically desirable, as every time I picture anything physical with her, i see a "light skinned" man touching my wife the way I should have been expressing for the past 10 years. I am full of regret and sorrow, but do not wish to continue living in a toxic dysfunctional household, especially for the kids. I ramble. sorry. I need some feedback of what to do. I know it takes BOTH to want the marriage to work and I truly do not even want to see her face ever again, at this point. I want to move on with life and make up for all the years I messed up and she capped off with an ultimate betrayal. Neither of us did more wrong, but I am clearly less forgiving. I feel hypocritical, but justified... aaarrrghhh. I keep holding onto hope that I can get better and my wife can find peace with separation or divorce....

sounclear posted 6/19/2015 12:16 PM

Added: i definitely feel like i cant be trusted. I place safeguards in place, but may have a sexual addiction when I am left to my own device.
I am so lost. I do not see myself as a good person. I have never really seen myself as "good." I placed her on a very high pedestal in the beginning of our relationship. We both shared a love of beautiful women (together). She made it abundantly clear that she never had eyes for anyone else. I took her and that for granted. I know where I messed up. I was so hurt, I pushed her away emotionally. I made her (the most physically beautiful person I have ever seen in person or otherwise with the most amazing body EVER) feel like she was ugly and undesirable. I even went as far to tell her I would NEVER be with her sexually or any other way. She had an affair and felt like she deserved better. She did. I have done her wrong. But, ,e owning my mess fully, has seemingly made her take a victim stance. And, regardless of my actions that put her into a victim stance, no one helpd a gun to her head and MADE her sleep with a co worker....numerous times. We all make our own choices and must suffer our own consequences for them. I don't know if I was trying to make her prove how much she loved me or how much I meant to her. I clearly struggle with self worth and esteem. I lack confidence, especially once she was berating me on a daily basis. I always practiced safe sex, but def carry guilt with the potential to spread disease. She said she felt the same way after doing what she did. We only slept together one time since her affair and it was before I found out. She said she used protection, but also gave oral sex...with no protection. I was told that an ongoing affair rarely is safe EVERY time. Stats scare me. I never told her about my affair because I was embarrassed and probably felt like it would give her the green light to cheat herself...which I always had fear of due to my own doings....me thinks me protest too much! To get better, I have been falling heavily on my church and family support. We still live in the house together. I plan to move out in early July. The kids are confused, as I sleep on the living room floor and have removed all my personal belongings from common areas in the house. boxing up everything to move. We start counseling next week, but I feel I am only open to that so she can learn acceptance and move on without me as a partner. I don't want to hurt and don't' want her to hurt anymore. I am trying the no contact thing except for kids and finances, but finding this to be extremely difficult for me, as I miss her but am so mad I don;t want to see her or speak with her. We are and have been toxic together for almost ten years. I appreciate any feedback. Any advice/feedback seems to help a little more with each piece. ty

rachelc posted 6/19/2015 14:26 PM

I replied on your thread in general.

BSandWS posted 6/26/2015 15:08 PM

SOundnclear,

Brutal circumstance. I am so sorry for you and I genuinely understand your painful situation.

All I can tell you is that I get a little better when I hold my wife and kids. When I exercise and when I pet my cat.

I feel worse when I avoid all of that because I feel hurt.

I have glimpsed the freedom that could come with accepting this new situation in my life - these new truths, But the glimpse is fleeting.

You are not alone.

KC915 posted 6/27/2015 04:22 AM

Hello, looking for someone in my situation. I was the AP, married my guy, had his baby, and hated everything about my life after because I couldn't accept what we had done. I hated myself and him, so I treated him horribly. He in turn, went and had an affair with his XW, because he thought he made a mistake by marrying me. Now, they are expecting his baby in a few months. I get so angry at myself for having an affair and bringing this pain upon myself, but I also get angry at him for betraying me. The fact that he is having a baby that will be 10 months younger than mine, is just humiliating, but I try to focus on me and my behavior, both in our affair and after, when I treated him like crap. The fact is that I love him, and want to be with him. Any advice, anyone in this situation?

VirginiaRegret posted 8/27/2015 08:18 AM

Question for madhatters, I found out a little over a week ago that my husband cheated on me in Vegas. At first I was devastated and we've definitely been doing some hysterical bonding. But now, after a really short time, i'm having trouble being upset with him. I found out almost immediately about the cheating by complete accident so it wasn't an ongoing thing. A few days of inappropriate texts, the one physical incident and that was it. Comparatively, my affair was much worse. It was a 6 month affair,first 3 emotional, last 3 also physical. I feel like I deserve what he did and if i'm honest, it's taken some pressure off me. I feel like I was living under a magnifying glass since I confessed to my affair. Now, the pressure is less intense.

And while I am hurt, I feel like I just want to move on now. We've done the you hurt me, I hurt you thing. What good does holding onto this do me? But i'm afraid if he feels like I think his cheating was no big deal, he'll just do it again, because why not? And it IS a big deal, the thought of him with her makes me so physically ill, I can't let myself think about it. But I think i'm still so bogged down by my own guilt that I don't have the capacity to hold him accountable for his actions. UGH. Does anyone know what i'm saying? Am I totally insane? Will the full impact of what he did hit me later?

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